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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, I know this has sort-of been done-to-death, but I'm struggling between these 2 processors.


My system is 75% music 25% movies - i have Revel F30 up-front, C30 center, S30 surrounds with ML334 and ML 380S for 2 channel, B&K AV5000 for remaining 5 channels. So, with the Lexicon front outs, using short runs of unbalanced out to 380S and relatively long (15 ft) balanced interconnect I should have all of the advantages of its surround processing with great quality 2 channel, using unity-gain mode to 380S and sources such as 2-channel analog bypass from sony 9000ES SACD. Video switching (component) helpful, but not critical in my setup.


OTOH, the AVP2, given its heritage from the ML No.40, has excellent sonics. Its the first 7-channel capable processor i heard, but i was impressed with its features, such as DPL-2 from 2-channel material! ?Benefits of Logic7 over DPL-2


I will hopefully audition the MC-12 in my system this weekend, but any advice as to the distinguishing features of these 2 units would be well appreciated!


Thanks!


Still struggling, TM
 

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If you look a the history of Proceed and their treatment of their customers who buy their upgreadeable and future-proof gear, you'll stay far, far away.


On the other hand, Lexicon has an excellent reputation as such.


Quaity / sound wise, these high end products are very similar in the execution of their respective duties (similar in performance).


Jeff


(former PAV / PDSD owner)
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by nstom
Its the first 7-channel capable processor i heard, but i was impressed with its features, such as DPL-2 from 2-channel material! ?Benefits of Logic7 over DPL-2
PL II is not a true 7-channel process; the best that companies can do with it is duplicate the side content in the rears with a slight time delay. When you audition the MC-12, you can readily hear the differences between Logic 7 and PL II for yourself, since the MC-12 has both.


Cheers,

Philip Brandes
 

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nstom,

If we're talking just sound, IMHO, since you strongly prefer music over HT, I'd go with the AVP2. I had the AVP before moving on to the MC12, and no way the Lex, again IMHO, is close to the AVP with 2-ch. I hear the AVP2 is even better(with music).


Jose.
 

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Jose - are you thinking of jumping back to the AVP2??


------


As Philip points out, Logic7 is a seven channel surround algorithm but it should be noted that it works fine with "just" 5 surrounds (plus any subs). If you have the ability to add two rear speakers then Logic 7 has clear advantages over DPL2. I only have 5 surround speakers (no rears) but still prefer Logic 7 over DPL2. Sometimes L7 is a bit too aggressive but tweaking surround modes in the MC-12 is easy. Its been my experience that L7 is noticeably better than DPL2 (even with just 5 surround speakers)- there have been times I swore I was listening to 5.1 when indeed it was only 2 channel. I cannot speak for the AVP2 but I owned the AVP for several years and was never quite happy with its DPL implementation (in fact I returned my original AVP because of that but ultimately bought another one). IMO, the AVP just wasn't very good with spreading sounds around the room on 2 channel material. That may have improved with the AVP2 and its DPL2 performance would be something I'd pay particular attention to if I were looking. That said, I don't think DPL2 rivals L7 - if you want the best surround algorithm then Lex wins hands down.


Since you stated most of your listening is for music only I would recommend you listen to the various music surround modes of either processor even if you tend to prefer straight 2 channel sound. Alternately if you only prefer straight 2 channel sound, the Lex may not be your best choice as a two channel preamp (it is after all a surround sound processor). You might also wish to consider listening to both processors in analog bypass mode. Lastly, it should be noted that the Lex software allows you to tweak the various surround mode parameters where the AVP significantly limits your options in this regard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for these comments - I believe I have 2 channel performance of my system handled adequately by bypassing the pre-pro and using my 2 channel pre-amp (Mark Levinson 380S) so the units (AVP2 and Lex MC-12) should be compared wrt their merits for surround processing. I have 7 channels set up as well. Keep it coming!


Comments discriminating these 2 for movies?


Thanks, TM
 

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" should be compared wrt their merits for surround processing. I have 7 channels set up as well."


Geof already answered that with:


"- if you want the best surround algorithm then Lex wins hands down. "


I also don't think the AVP2 will be able to compete against the MC-12 in Logic 7 on a 7 channel system. Logic 7 is that good and it will work with all your 2 channel, DD and DTS material.


Shawn
 

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Sound is sound and processing is processing; it doesn't matter how many channels you have. I've heard both in the same environment. The Lexicon is better at processing and the AVP2 sounds better to me. The Lexicon sounds very good but the AVP2 is better IMHO.
 

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Quote:
I also don't think the AVP2 will be able to compete against the MC-12 in Logic 7 on a 7 channel system. Logic 7 is that good and it will work with all your 2 channel, DD and DTS material.
There's no doubt of this in my mind whatsoever. I was actually a bit biased against L7 when I got the MC-12. I'd heard so much about L7 for so long from so many different people that I thought it was like my mother trying to tell me that Cod Liver Oil is good for you. Well, I found that all those folks knew what they were talking about (just like Mom). It didn't take me long (several short scenes in several movies and one or two CD's) to realize that the MC-12 was just light-years ahead of the AVP in terms of surround processing. Seeing as how you plan on using your Levinson 2 channel preamp I don't think you have a hard choice to make. The Levinson preamp along with an MC-12B would be one helluva combination and I don't think any other processor (except possibly a Meridian) could come close to rivaling....especially considering that you already have a 7 speaker setup....
 

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If you have a Mark Levinson 380S this is a no brainer; get the MC12B and use the 380S as the preamp. The MC12 is the best surround processor I have heard to date. You can not top it. The merit of the AVP is the 2 channel, which you already have surpassed with the 380S.
 

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"Sound is sound and processing is processing; it doesn't matter how many channels you have."


Maybe I misunderstand what you mean but IMO the processing absolutely is involved in the overall sound quality of the experience.


Otherwise if processing/channels didn't matter then there would be no difference between watching your movies in mono comapred to plain 2 channel compared against watching them in full surround sound.


Shawn
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by robertawillisjr
I've heard both in the same environment.
What environment was that? - Your own home? A dealer shop?

How long did you spend with each pre/pro?

How long of an interval between listening to each?

Did you use the same source material for both auditions? If so, what?

Were the two pre/pros level matched within .1 dB? (If not, your observation is meaningless, since volume differences of that little affect perceived "sound quality" in even the SAME equipment)


If you're going to claim this blanket judgment is based on your experience, it is only fair that we know the circumstances of the comparison.


Cheers,

Philip Brandes
 

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Philip,


God forbid anyone should express a personal preference for any product but Lexicon --


Anytime an individual does express a preference for product X over Lexicon, we can count on the gang from SMR Forum to step in and question that preference. I mean how on God's Green Earth could anyone possibly prefer anything over Lexicon?


I prefer Diet Coke over Diet Pepsi, would you like to argue that personal preference as well?


Look on the bright side, either product is feeding the same Harman International Family of Companies' bottom line in the end.


Regards,
 

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Philip, I think everyone is entitled to their opinion on how stuff sounds without having to lay the foundation for their opinion. There are several AVS members here who agree with robertawillisjr and that is their right (even if they're wrong ;) ). I agree that if they didn't listen under controlled conditions their opinions might be flawed (or at least based on flawed conditions) but then I haven't been asked by anyone to tell how I arrived at the conclusion that the MC-12B sounds as good as (yet more detailed) than the AVP, which I admittedly made under flawed conditions....
 

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Hi guys,


Although I am a long time lurker, this is actually my first post on this site. I decided to jump in because I am also searching for that great "home theater" sound. Without getting to drawn out, let me say that I currently have in my possession a Citation 7, Proceed AVP and a recently acquired MC-1. I started my home theater search when I purchased the Citation 7.0 back in early 1996. I was truly impressed with the sound quality of this unit in both 2 channel and multi-channel reproduction. In fact, Fosgates 6-Axis mode opened my eyes to the possibility of multi-channel music.


As most of you know, the Citation is an analog piece and it entered the game just as the digital revolution was hitting its stride. I heard all the high praise over DD/DTS and couldn't wait for Citation's 7.5 digital add-on to be introduced. My dealer even told me that the Citation could be later upgraded to DD/DTS by a simple E-prom swap. Ha, I of course fell for that one.


While the Citation 7.5 never came to fruition, I was lucky that Citation moved to Madrigal. I know that Madrigal gets bashed for its treatment of customers regarding upgrades, but their CS is great. Todd has always answered whatever questions I had within a day. The other great thing, was that Madrigal was going to allow current Citation owners to "upgrade" to the new AVP for a very reasonable price. They gave me (us) $2200 for my Citation towards the purchase of an AVP when Citation 7.0s where going for $1000 or less over the net.


Enter the AVP: I was very impressed with its 2 channel sound...and DD/DTS sounded fantastic on good movies. And I say good movies because too many times, directors and sound engineers don't take advantage of the spatial realism that a well recorded movie can provide. And it was in this case that I actually began missing my Citation. So many older or remixed and remastered movies for 5.1 just didn't provide the spacial realism that my old Citation did in 6-Axis. While the AVP had great 2 channel sound, it just didn't have great sound processing for movies...or in fact, for multi-channel music.


Fortunately, I found a used Citation in my local classified for $300. I was in heaven again...I had my DD/DTS processor for those well recorded movies and my 6-Axis for TV/SAT and older, remastered movies. As time went on I found myself using my Citation more than I did my Proceed. 6-Axis just sounded that good to me and I was much more a movie watcher than a music listener. As time went on, I continued to wonder just how good the new-release movies were sounding in DD/DTS. Occasionally, I would hook back up the AVP (I continued to use it in a second audio only setup) to check things out. There were some nice soundtracks out there...Ronin sounded great in DD. So, I again went on the hunt for a one-box solution for a DD/DTS and great matrix pre/pro.


Enter the Lexicon MC-1. It did indeed solve most of my problems. Unfortunatley, IMHO it didn't match the Proceed or the Citation in 2 channel reproduction. It seemed to have a brighter, more analytical quality about it. And while it surpassed the AVP in multi-channel music reproduction, it was a much closer race with the Citation's 6-Axis. Both these units have very flexible tweaking parameters to adjust the sound. As many Lex owners have attested to, Logic-7 can and does sound better on many movies compared to the DD/DTS mix. And the fact that you can "add" Logic-7 to any DD/DTS soundtrack was even more impressive.


My doubts, however, came when I started listening to Logic-7 with older remastered (5.1) movies. While watching Thunderball in Logic-7, I noticed a distinct pumping form Connery's voice when he was talking to the female agent on the balcony. This occurred at the 1:40 mark of the movie, and his voice jumped from the center to the other speakers...only momentarily. It was enough for me to reconnect my Citation and listen for this same pumping. The Citation did not exhibit this same effect. This is when I decided to directly compare the 6-Axis matrix to Lex's Logic-7.


I decided to take Fosgate's (or CWood) advice from a post read in here...I turned off the front channels to check for dialogue leakage and rear-channel separation. I tried several movies, and time and again, the Lex exhibited more leakage than the Citation did. My surprise came with Saving Private Ryan. I thought this would be a difficult movie for any matix decoder to handle because of the active rears (battle scene) and intense dialogue. The Lex performed as I thought...there was low level leakage with pumping in and out of the dialogue from the rear channels. When Hanks says "clear the ramp", you can hear it in the rears. As the movie goes on, the dialogue level gets lower and then louder in certain segments. My surprise was that the Citation had absolutely no leakage at all. I saw their lips moving on the screen, but nothing was coming through the rears. You could hear the explosions and bullets whizzzing by, but that was it...or an occasional voice from off screen.


The rear channel separation was also superior in the Citation's rear channels (IMHO). One of my favorite movies to check this is Dragonheart...where the dragon circles Quaid in a clockwise motion. While the MC-1 did a fine job as well, the Citation seemd to more discrete with its placement of sound throughout the 360 degree field.


This is the bottom line for me. I purchased the Lexicon hoping to sovle my home theater dilema...and for the most part it has. But since I favor and listen to the matrix modes just as often...if not more, I'm still undecided on what to do. Has this search for home theater nirvanna brought me back to where I started? I don't know. The MC-1 gives me those things the Citation doesn't have...anything digital. And while movies are my main concern, the Citation still holds up admirably for music...even compared to all those high-end digital dacs out there.


These are just my personal observations and it is not an attack on Lexicon...I own it now. I just prefer the 6-Axis more than I do the Logic-7. Maybe the new MC-12 has made some performance improvements over the older Logic-7. And if that is the case, bravo. My situation remains the same, however. Where do I go from here? I still have 3 outstanding pre/pros when I really only want one. Thanks for listening.


-Chris
 

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Quote:
I mean how on God's Green Earth could anyone possibly prefer anything over Lexicon?
I often wonder the same thing....:p
 

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Great first post Goldear.
Quote:
Maybe the new MC-12 has made some performance improvements over the older Logic-7. And if that is the case, bravo. My situation remains the same, however. Where do I go from here?
The MC-12 uses totally different DSP's than its predecessors and L7 (along with it's other surround modes) have been completely rewritten to run on the new DSP's. I cannot personally comment on the differences between old and new but every thing I've read says the difference is "significant". I'm sure Shawn and Philip and others can more fully address this....

Quote:
I know that Madrigal gets bashed for its treatment of customers regarding upgrades, but their CS is great. Todd has always answered whatever questions I had within a day.
No argument there. Todd is great. I cannot imagine what they'd do without him...however, even so, Madrigal has managed to fall out of my graces (I'm trying to be positive and polite here) for their lack of customer service pertaining to software related issues (my PMDT experience is long and storied).

Quote:
While the AVP had great 2 channel sound, it just didn't have great sound processing for movies...or in fact, for multi-channel music.
Agreed. Counting myself, I know of at least 6 ex-AVP owners who are now happy MC-12 owners. While there is some general disagreement amongst that group about 2 channel sound performance between the two I'm fairly certain everyone agrees the MC-12 is the clear winner for surround processing....


I'm not trying to sell anything nor am I a Lex "fanatic" but I think you may want to audition the MC-12. I, for one, would certainly like to hear your opinion of it.....
 

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Chris,


"I heard all the high praise over DD/DTS and couldn't wait for Citation's 7.5 digital add-on to be introduced. "


I was waiting for that one too! Still got the press release on it around here somewhere.


"My doubts, however, came when I started listening to Logic-7 with older remastered (5.1) movies. While watching Thunderball in Logic-7, I noticed a distinct pumping form Connery's voice when he was talking to the female agent on the balcony. This occurred at the 1:40 mark of the movie, and his voice jumped from the center to the other speakers...only momentarily. It was enough for me to reconnect my Citation and listen for this same pumping. The Citation did not exhibit this same effect. This is when I decided to dirtly compare the 6-Axis matrix to Lex's Logic-7. "


Where you listening to the 2 channel mix in Logic 7 or applying Logic 7 to the 5.1 track? From your description it sounds like the 5.1 track in the Lex. vs. the 2 channel track (obviously) in the Citation. If that was the case you could simply be hearing the difference in mixes.


In my case years ago I went from a Fosgate 3A to a DC-1 and my experience mirrors yours... except in reverse. 70mm (the forbearer of 6 Axis) had far more leakage and pumping then Logic 7 did.


If 6 Axis is as good as you said then Fosgate made a wrong turn with DPLII which Jim Fosgate and Charles Wood both say betters 6-Axis. Compared side to side in the same machine I prefer L7 over DPLII. And that is including things like the DragonHeart demo you mentioned.


"Maybe the new MC-12 has made some performance improvements over the older Logic-7."


It is a completely new version in the MC-12.


"Where do I go from here?"


Perhaps seeing if you like DPLII? Or trying Logic 7 in the MC-12?


If you want there are settings you can change in the MC-1 which will tone down what you are hearing. But I feel the test Cwood mentions is flawed. If you want the ultimate of no steering artifacts listen in 2 channel. Just listening to the rears it is hard to tell what is a steering artifact and what is something that was a quick and deliberate pan to the rears that the other process missed. Thats why I listen to all the channels to get the big picture.


Shawn
 

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Thanks Geof.


You're absolutely right about Madrigal's lack of support for software related issues...they were always very slow bringing new technologies to market. This is one of the reasons why I didn't (as of yet) upgrade to the AVP2 and decided to try the MC-1. The AVP was probably not my best choice as a pre/pro given my desire for movies over music...but $2200 dollars for my Citation towards the AVP was a generous offer. I would have probably kicked myself if I didn't give it a try. That being said, I haven't had a chance to do a thorough evaluation of DPLII, which the AVP2 now has. My hesitation is that I still see a lot of Lex owners claiming that Logic-7 is superior to DPLII, and if that is the case, the AVP2 upgrade would be a waste of time for me since I still prefer 6-Axis. Decisions, decisions!
 

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Shawn,


What I meant was that the Lexicon does a better job (If you like more aggressive audio output) doing multi-channel processing than the AVP. This (to me, at least) is different than the quality of the audio. To my mind (and I have owned all Lexicon models prior to the 12) Lexicon provides more information in the side and rear channels even in the music modes.


The Lexicon units also provide more volume to the side and rear channels than the AVP and AVP2. For music listening I have always preferred ambience retrieval using the side and rear channels (sometimes the center as well) and I have always preferred the audio quality of the AVP and now the AVP2 over the Lexicon products using the surround modes.


In the past I waffled between the benefits of better surround processing (retrieval of information) versus better audio quality. Over the past few years I have begun to question whether the algorithms used by Lexicon (for that matter any company) produce accurate retrieval of information or whether the results are just more pleasing. For movies I can't say. Sound for movies are truly full of gimmicks. Here Lexicon algorithms seem to be better since more information is producesd. But to my mind the AVP's sound better. This was in my home on my equipment.


I listened to the AVP2 and Lex 12 at my dealer's. I have known this dealer for 20 years or more and am pretty well acquainted with his room and setup.


For ambience retrieval I still preferred the AVP. I believe that the results are usually subtle and on acoustical material I think that I have a better intellectual handle as to what to expect and what I should be hearing.


For DTS music its hard to tell because most of these discs are poorly produced. Three of the better sounding discs (Diana Krall, Ray Bryant and Nathaniel Rosen sorry but the titles aren't handy) sound better to me on the AVP.


Please don't take this as stating the Lexicon is gimmicky. It is a serious machine that is made by excellent people. They have done a fine job, each product has become progressively better. I can only give you my preferences.


Perhaps someone should start a thread discussing multi-channel processing for both music and movies.
 
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